As one of the top exports of the SA electonic dance scene, voted 4th best South African DJ by DJMAG, Haezer has established himself as a leader in the bass heavy electro genre which has gained wide spread popularity in dance clubs around the world. With his maxim ‘Commercial Music is Dead’ Haezer has traversed the world promoting the underground and being a part of the wheel that has turned to give this genre the deserved mass recognition it receives today.
How would you describe the South African dance scene? From what we know a lot of international DJs are constantly touring there.
The dance scene has always been dominated by house music. It’s the one genre of dance music that’s always been played on our national radio and is being played in all the ‘fancy’ clubs. The downside is that it’s always been the super mainstream stuff being played on radio. And when it’s played on radio, people will go to the show.
Like with Avicii. Just because of ‘Levels”, he had 16 000 people rock up for one show in Johannesburg. This is not a festival. Just a one day show.
But most of the clubs I play, are packed with kids who grew up on rock music. I, myself grew up on punk rock, folk, blues, just band music in general. And this creates a very unique atmosphere in the club.
I can not speak much about the mainstream dance scene, cause i’m not in it. But as far as alternative dance scene, it’s pretty young and very special. There’s more kids stagediving and moshing at club shows than at band events…
I think that’s why internationals love coming here, because the energy in the crowd is that of a rock show.
Super fun. I played in London, Lisbon, Vienna and Emmaboda. It was a very short trip, but super intense. I played Koko in London with Crookers, then Lisbon with Datsik, then Beatpatrol Festival on the Dim Mak Stage and finally Emmaboda festival in Sweden in the most beautiful forest.
It was the first time I played in Koko and the first time i’ve played anywhere in Sweden, so i was very excited and both shows surpassed my expectations.
I have a deep passion for traveling and have a good following in Europe, so I’m always keen to hit Europe, especially in summer! I also then went back to Europe to promote my EP, THE WRONHG KID DIED, that tour was 7 weeks!
Is there a certain sound from EDM that is really overdone and dated?
plenty. but this is the problem with music these days. It moves so fast and you have so many imitators and not enough pioneers, that a ‘certain sound’ is outdated on a monthly basis now.
I’ll hear a song that does well on radio and in the club circuit and then two weeks later there’s 5 more songs that sound exactly the same! It must be so boring copying someone else’s sound, just to make a few extra bucks!
If it makes my girlfriend’s booty move in the studio, it’ll make everyone else’s move on the dancefloor 🙂
I like to burn ideas of tracks onto cd and listen to it in my car, while I’m cooking or just sitting on the balcony having a cigarette. If I’m not sick of that bassline by the end of the day and still jamming to it, I know it’ll work.
Is there an EDM artist you wouldn’t collaborate with?
my maxim is to never work with assholes. No matter how talented or how much I like their stuff…If you’re an asshole, I won’t work with you 😉
Should promoters and agents do more to invest in new talent?
Yes, but that’s easier said than done. There’s a handful of new talent that’s undiscovered just cause they have no idea how to market themselves in the smallest capacity. But truth is. If you make a good song these days, you will be found and fast!
With blogs, soundcloud, facebook and twitter I have never seen hype created so fast in the history of dance music!
So yes, i believe they should constantly seek new talent and more importantly unique talent. I believe it’s the artists with their own unique sound that will excel in the dance world.
What do you consider to be your biggest break that launched your DJ career?
I was quite lucky. Trashbags in Australia heard some of my tracks floating around on blogs and decided to book me for a 5 week tour with Gtronic. I think touring with Gtronic helped bump up my credibility. Also Fabian Kournettas from ‘So Not Berlin’, a party in Munich took a chance on me and booked my first European show. Because of that one show that was booked, my manager was able to book a whole tour around that and that’s when my career really kicked off. Recently i’d say my E.P ‘The Wrong Kid Died’ getting signed to Dim Mak and one of the tracks off that E.P ‘Troublemaker feat Tumi’ getting playlisted on our biggest radio station, 5FM and reaching number 5 in the top 40 chart.
I love most German and Belgian beers!
Did EDM bring the world closer together?
For me at least. All these producers i only read about and was djing in my sets i finally got to meet and are now friends with. I have a place to sleep almost everywhere in Europe because of EDM!
What jobs have you done before becoming a DJ?
I studied film and I was working in the film industry as an editor before i became a dj/producer.
Describe your studio set-up.
minimal. i like to limit myself in order to be creative with what i’ve got. I have a MacBook Pro, a moog little phatty, a blofeld desktop synth, edirol ua25 soundcard and rockit 6’s…I produce in Logic and Reason. I’m currently building up a new studio, but all i’m adding is adam A7x monitors, a sub and a midi controlled mixer.
How will electro house evolve in the next 5 years?
Producers are getting more and more experimental and truly finding their own sound. I think it will be much more diverse and only the pioneers will survive. The one hit wonder “sounds like skrillex,deadmau5,etc” bedroom producers will get fluffed out.
Is there a final thing you would like to say to our readers?
Listen to more music! Thanks for taking the time to read this….